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Is it me?

(13 Posts)
Peppapigisnotmyname Tue 29-Apr-14 16:27:54

I'm wondering what others experiences are of primary school?

My dd is in reception. She's an outgoing and bright girl, previously described as 'very, very clever, one of life's leaders' by her nursery teacher. Since starting school though, she's become increasingly withdrawn. Tearful, clinging to me at drop off, very upset about small things. She's had the hood ripped from her coat in the playground, three head injuries in separate incidents in one week etc somethpimes she comes out of school crying so much she can't cup even speak and hyperventilating. She never gets any certificates etc even though other children the class have had two since the start of the year. I pulled the teacher up about it and she just said 'she'll get one'. Basically, I feel they're just not interested in her.

I'm no stranger this school, my DS is in yr 4. He is a shy boy and has ASD. Dd was also assessed and is NT. He's statemented and has a lovely TA. Given that I knew the school I thought dd would florish. But she hasn't. Over the Easter hols she drew a picture of herself in the playground and of other children near her entitled 'they hate me'

The school itself is a high achieving school, very unbending in its attitude - they are always right even when they're wrong.

Obviously I've spoken to the teacher about what's been going on, several times, she's just looked at me blankly. I've spoken to the head teacher who said they would try to get to the bottom of what going on but nothing happened.

I've since heard from other children in the class that there is some type of unpleasant behaviour directed at dd. Dd has also said this but school denied it so I believed them - I feel awful now.

Anyway, not wanting to wait while the schools attitude crushed her completely, I contacted the LEA and have secured a place for her at a nearby school. I told her current school what I was doing and arranged for her to have a look at it today. When I collected dd from the current school her teacher, barely spoke to me, just shoving her through the door saying 'I think she has everything' and walked off? I was going to try to explain my concerns again but I didn't get the chance.

In any event the new school was delightful so I'm hopeful. But is her current schools attitude typical? I've only got experience of this school so I don't have any type of comparison to make ......

workatemylife Tue 29-Apr-14 17:15:36

Dd never gets awards and certificates either despite being a pretty high achiever and by all accounts well behaved in class. The school regards these things as a form of encouragement rather than a reward. If you do well, nothing, but if you behave well for the first time that term, lots of praise!

i would be more worried by the rest of you post. Yes, there are bumps and scrapes in the playground, but if you think your child is being bullied or picked on, the school should have a process to follow up any complaint.Have you raised this directly?

What do you think about the other school? Practically feasible and worth the disruption? It can be hard to break into a new class, especially if her confidence has been dented.

mathanxiety Tue 29-Apr-14 17:25:00

It's not you. The school sounds crap. Well done for changing.

Whether your DD is 'one of life's leaders', etc., remains to be seen, but she was clearly one of this school's acceptable collateral damage statistics. A decent school creates an atmosphere where everyone can thrive or as near as dammit, socially and emotionally, and certainly where nobody suffers head injuries repeatedly.

Don't be tempted to focus on your DD's cleverness or leadership potential when assessing her progress in the new school. Habits of work and attitude to it are very important. Don't mention what the nursery said about her when talking with her new teachers. Don't ever mention any of it to her, of course.

If there is a board of governors, state your concerns in writing. Don't bother trying to approach either the teacher or admin here again. They are clearly not interested in constructive criticism or your perfectly reasonable concerns for your child's safety and wellbeing.

Watch out for signs of reprisal against your DS.

MillyMollyMama Tue 29-Apr-14 17:29:48

I think you have hit the button with your comment that they are always right. Also, no, it is not you. As an experienced Mum (mine are now at University) I noticed time and time again that some teachers and some schools favour some children above others. They favour some parents above others too. Also high achieving, rigid, schools can be very unaccommodating of a child, and a parent, who takes a while to settle in or is a bit different. They can also dislike parents who question their methods or ask them to do anything out of their routine. Most children and parents do fall into line of course but I have seen a number of children and parents most distressed about a school where nearly everyone else is totally happy, ecstatic even! It is nearly always the children who take more time to settle in or who are harder work in the classroom.

I feel you may, unwittingly, have got into this position. Rest assured that kind, professional teachers would have taken your concerns seriously and liaised with you about how to help your DD and manage the situation regarding the other children. I do not think many teachers are as rude as your DDs class teacher appears to be but she is obviously peeved about you going and has taken it personally. She probably should take it personally and reflect upon why this has happened. She won't, of course, and neither will the school.

Sometimes children are not at the right school, with the right ethos for them, so moving is the best idea and I assume your DD wishes to start again. I do hope she will be fine and please rest assured you have acted totally correctly. It is a shame that some schools are utterly defensive and unresponsive. They only want children who are "no trouble and a joy to teach" with equally compliant parents. Some of us just don't make the grade!

sittingatmydeskagain Tue 29-Apr-14 18:05:09

I only have our school to compare against, but your daughter woukd not be treated like this at ours. You would be listened to, by both the teacher and Head, any any issues with other children are watched very carefully.

I would move her asap.

2cats2many Tue 29-Apr-14 18:29:11

The school that my children go to sounds nothing like this. My DS is in reception and goes in grinning in the morning and comes out grinning at the end of the day. When I ask him what his favourite part of the day was, he says: everything.

Well done for changing. I would have done the same in your position.

Leeds2 Tue 29-Apr-14 19:23:24

I think you have done the right thing. Good Luck to your DD in her new school - I bet all the other children can't wait to have a new friend to show round! I volunteer in a primary school, and being allowed to sit next to a new boy/girl is always a highlight of the term.

PastSellByDate Wed 30-Apr-14 10:29:23

Hi Peppapig:

I could write a novel - but I have posted a lot elsewhere about DD1 and DD2s issues at our school. DD2 was made truly miserable by two very dominant girls who specialise in teasing and coercing children to bring in money/ toys/ etc.. for them. They literally could enforce an order that nobody was to play with DD2 or they'd be made miserable - so DD2 spent a lot of her time (YR - Y4) on her own during breaks. Suffice it to say DD2 transfered earlier this year (Y4) - and she's a totally new girl. Happy, bubbly, cheeky and full of beans. She's at a school where children are much more normal and happy for another person to come along and join in the game/ play.

So don't worry about the old school - as long as their o.k. with your elder child just brave it out. Any bad feelings will subside over time.

What's important is that your child is happy - sure for their day to day getting on - but ultimately a happy child who enjoys school will learn better.


pointythings Wed 30-Apr-14 14:50:55

No, I don't think it's you and well done for moving her. YrR should be about settling them in and making sure they're happy at school - clearly this isn't happening with your DD, which is a failure on the school's part. It sounds as if she is being bullied and the school are brushing it under the carpet, which means you're on a hiding to nowhere if you stay. You've done the right thing.

ratqueen Wed 30-Apr-14 20:41:22

I am so glad you are moving your DD! What an awful attitude for a school to have.

shebird Wed 30-Apr-14 21:49:36

I cannot believe the attitude of this teacher and the school. You are right to move her.

Frikadellen Wed 30-Apr-14 22:18:55

No its not you and I am another who feels you did the right thing in moving your dd. I hope y ou get your happy girl back soon.

In my experience over 4 primary type schools (infant and junior and primary)
The outstanding infant was appalling when my dd had issues. the satisfactory primary was amazing. It is a limited experience and I know it could have been the other way but I do not think outstanding or good / satisfactory or anything will tell you how they will deal with your childs emotional well being.

Peppapigisnotmyname Thu 01-May-14 20:08:03

Thanks for your feed back everyone. Feeling reassured that it's not me actually! Dd starts her new school next week and is so excited. Wish I could take ds too!!!

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